During these unprecedented times, there is not one person who hasn’t been affected by new government legislation and locked down communities.
The government has announced that for those tenants in society that have been made unemployed, furloughed or temporarily “laid off”, there would be assistance made available to both landlords and tenants:
- Tenants will be protected from eviction for non-payment of rent for a period of 3 months (to be reviewed at the end of the 3 months).
- Landlords will be afforded the opportunity of a “mortgage holiday” of up to 3 months, this will be available on buy to let mortgages also.
We are therefore saddened to see an increase in enquiries where tenants have been provided with little to no notice to leave their rented property.
Recent examples of illegal evictions
A family member of the landlord had been re-patriated to the UK and had nowhere to stay. The landlord informed the tenant, who had been a model tenant to date, that there was no option other than to move out after 7 days as the landlord needed the property for a member of her family.
In a separate instance, where a tenant was renting a room from the landlord, the landlord wanted the tenant out as a result of the lockdown. The landlord took away his key, threw his belongings out the window and would not allow the tenant to re-enter the property!
Both of the above are ILLEGAL EVICTIONS.
As you will hear regularly on the news, “Our country has not been in this rigid a situation in peacetime history”.
However, despite instructions provided by the Government to practice social distancing, travel for essential reasons only, work from home where possible and most importantly STAY AT HOME, it is frustrating that some Landlords see this as an opportunity to recover their properties.
This is a time when we need to take stock, ensure that our rights as tenants are protected and ensure landlords are attending to their legal obligations.